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Type 2 Diabetes: What Are The Challenges Diabetics Face With Weight Loss?

Many people with type 2 diabetes are on a path that leads to weight gain, higher blood sugar levels, the need to take greater amounts of medication, and a greater chance of diabetic complications. But think about this, you can reverse the trend. The weight can come off… slowly and surely. Blood sugar levels can also drop, as can the doses of medications you are taking now. Many symptoms, such as those present in neuropathy, can improve… just like heart disease.

Type 2 diabetes is much like other diseases in that it is caused by genetics and the environment in which you live your life. While genetics cannot be changed, your lifestyle can be changed.

Weightloss: Keep in mind that just a 5 to 10 percent loss of your body weight can help you control your blood sugar levels. But someone with type 2 diabetes who needs to lose weight has a number of challenges to face, and the more you understand these challenges, the more empowered you will be in achieving your weight loss goal. These challenges include:

1. Fluctuating insulin and sugar levels: This is particularly difficult for people with type 2 diabetes… especially those with “belly fat.” This fluctuation produces a “yo-yo” effect as your blood sugar drops and you are hungry. Then, if you eat too many carbohydrates to raise your blood sugar, you gain weight. This leads to cravings, binge eating, and uncontrolled eating.

2. Postprandial hyperglycemia: This is a spike in blood sugar levels after a meal, possibly from eating too many high GI foods. You then fall asleep, which leads to reduced thermogenesis, which means that the normal bodily function that generates heat and energy is not being used by physical energy…so you gain weight.

3. Carbohydrate Addiction: When their blood sugar levels are out of balance, a diabetic will crave junk food, such as sweets and starchy foods. Carbohydrate addiction is a major barrier to losing weight.

4. Food allergies and sensitivities: It is not unusual to find overweight or obese diabetics who are allergic to dairy products and wheat. Gluten sensitivity is also another problem. Gluten is found in barley, oats, rye, and wheat.

5. Alcohol: Alcohol is high in calories (kilojoules) and is often a contributing factor to obesity.

6. Stress: Emotional problems often lead to emotional eating, which adds to the increased release of various hormones. This process is related to weight gain in type 2 diabetics.

7. Low Testosterone Levels: In overweight men, particularly those with abdominal fat, low testosterone levels are extremely common. Side effects include: depression, low fat metabolism, fatigue, impaired insulin sensitivity, loss of muscle mass, decreased libido, and erectile dysfunction. Loss of muscle mass and tone makes it difficult to start an exercise program.

The more you know about the challenges you will face as you embark on your weight loss plan, the more likely it is that you will reach your weight loss goal to help reverse your type 2 diabetes.

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